Introduction

The topic of machines for moving people is a manual in itself. The mechanical means, whether elevator (lift, escalator), moving stairs or travelator have revolutionized the planning of buildings, and have in many ways eclipsed the role of staircases. Without lifts the development of the skyscraper would not have been possible. This chapter reviews the historical development in the mechanics of shifting people up and down or through a building. The material presented owes a great deal to the help given by Kevan Goetch and Barry Wheeler from Otis Elevator plc.

Readers wanting precise information on the sizing of elevators, together with lift rooms etc. and escalators, need to turn to the industry itself, which operates a design service that covers traffic calculation, number and size of equipment as well as advice on motive power.

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